Software defined networking (SDN) enables network function programmability for ease of configuration and maintenance, and also allows network administrators to change traffic rules on the fly. However, denial of service (DoS) attacks pose security challenges on the centralized control plane of SDN. Although the transport layer security (TLS) can help secure the control plane, it is computationally intensive, complex to configure, and not mandatory in Open Flow protocol. In this paper, we present a lightweight authentication solution,called Hidden Authentication (HiAuth), to protect the SDN controller by hiding the identities of the forwarding devices into the control packets via efficient bitwise operations. HiAuth is the first to incorporate information hiding techniques into Open Flow to provide security against DoS attacks. HiAuth exploits the IP identification field of IPv4 and the transaction identification field of Open Flow in two authentication schemes. The experimental results show that HiAuth can effectively mitigate intruder Do Sattacks and provide high undetectability to attackers.
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